In your opinion, what do the shapes on this abstract painting in blue represent? Many visitors of my gallery and expositions say they recognise stylised trees in this painting, but that is not what they are. They are people.
It is a somewhat foggy evening, early in Springtime. It is not warm, but not really cold, either. As a matter of fact, just right for quickly getting some fresh air. During such an evening walk you will of course encounter other people. Alone or in groups. Some are walking their dog. Acquaintances are greeting one another. And sometimes they stop for a little chat.
Evil gossip? Or something else?
The two people on the left, in the foreground of this abstract painting in blue, are walking. But the people behind them, on the right, have interrupted their evening walk. In the dim light of a street lantern they have made time for a chat. But… it is not just any chat. They are whispering, gossiping. What about? I have no idea. But within this group I have intuitively used the colour red. This colour, among other things, symbolises rancour. So it might well be a rather evil kind of gossip…
How to react to something like that?
Those two pedestrians are not unaware that the group is involved in gossiping. But they don’t yet know how to respond. Should they respond at all? In any case, they are ‘not amused’, for near them you can see a touch of red, as well. This is near the chin, which indicates that they have slightly uneasy and defensive facial expressions.
A relatively lighthearted work of art
What would you do if you were one of the pedestrians in this painting? Personally, if the whisperers were acquaintences of mine, I would probably say ‘hello!’ to them. Otherwise I would carry on without giving them another look. And without saying anything. It does not bother me when people talk about me. If that is what they enjoy, let them go ahead. Freedom for all… This should help to explain why this abstract painting in blue is relatively more lighthearted than you might expect from me.
Heads are central
People’s bodies have only minimally been visualised in this painting. For the bodies matter less than the heads. After all, it is in the heads of the little group that the gossip arises. And in the heads of the passers-by this results in insecurity. Moreover, the play of light and shadows makes sure that the contours of the people cannot be clearly distinguished.
Why people without faces?
As you can see, the people in this abstract painting in blue have no faces. This was done on purpose, too. They are anonymous people; they could represent anyone. So, whom the cap fits, let him wear it. You can project your own thought onto this painting, to your heart’s content. How do you think this encounter will end?
The idea behind this abstract painting in blue
How did the idea for this painting come to me? Well, I once experienced a similar situation myself. That evening walk happened quite some time ago, but made a great impression on me. It stuck in my head and then something usually happens.
Event ‘ripens’ into an abstract image
I started thinking about it and then, sooner or later, such an experience materialises into an abstract image. Once the mental picture in my head is complete, I find a canvas of the appropriate size and get to work. A painting like this does not spring into being in one go. I work on in it in a fair number of phases. In between the work has to dry.
Continual search for shapes and colours
During the painting process I also regularly stand back to observe whether the canvas adequately expresses what I have in mind. It is a process of continual searching for the right shapes and matching colours. And of course also for the right finish. For instance, the yellow glow of the lantern will shine if it catches the light. That is because I played around with the varnish.
My trademark: blue
Talking about the colours: this is another painting dominated by a variety of blue colours, which have become my ‘trademark’. Blue, among other things, is the colour of life. And gossip happens to be a part of life. Everyone is bound to encounter it at some time. No matter how annoying this can be…